Nik Fields brings the spice to new midtown kitchen space
Welcome to Local Ingredients, where we highlight the people, places and products of Phoenix.
The culinary landscape of Phoenix is an eclectic reflection of the tastemakers who call this city home. From food trucks to fine dining and James Beard-worthy operations to international food festivals, our cuisine scene is always making headlines. And Nik Fields, aka the Chic Chef and the entrepreneur behind Chic Chef Co., is the latest mastermind to generate a buzz.
With just four years in the culinary industry, Fields has built her brand as a celebrity chef, entrepreneur, author, philanthropist, event producer and all-around social media powerhouse.
“Chic Chef Co. is for food enthusiasts who can appreciate fresh ingredients, fashion with a splash of 'slayage' mixed with uplifting energy,” Fields explained.
Fields recently announced her next move is bringing all aspects of her business together under one roof by putting down roots in a brand new kitchen space in Phoenix’s midtown neighborhood, and she’s bringing the flavor, too.
“Chic Chef Co. Marketplace was created by happenstance,” Fields said. “I was driving in the midtown area, noticed a brand new location and I literally said, 'this is where the home of Chic Chef Company will be.'”
Her new marketplace — which will open at 2302 N. Central Ave., across from the Heard Museum — will feature, a 2,000-square-foot café, a community garden, free meeting space for entrepreneurs and events, weekly brunches, a themed dinner series as well as 800 square feet of retail space, following its January 2021 grand opening.
As for her inspiration for the space, she said "these are all the things I needed [and] wanted and they weren’t available to me ... I’m not building a table for me, we’re building a space for us. Us, meaning entrepreneurs.”
While Fields plans to stock the shelves with her signature line of Artisan olive oils, vinegars, organic teas, gourmet popcorn and organic simple syrups, she’s already expanding her offerings by introducing such a line of seasonings, which harken back to her Caribbean Afro-Latina roots.
Ahead of her marketplace’s grand opening, the Chic Chef caught up with Visit Phoenix to dish on her brand expansion, her passion and all her local favorites.
Will we see new products roll out leading up to your grand opening?
New products are rolling out as we speak. Due to the boycott of Goya, I’ve created a Sazón and Adobo spice blend, which landed national recognition. Based on the enormous support, we’ve added four additional no-salt spice blends: garlic pepper, garlic & herb, Cajun and an Italian herb blend. We have 10 blends total now, and we will be up to 20 by the end of the year. We’re also adding additional olive oil and vinegar flavors, as well as a premixed vinaigrette.
Can you tell us a little bit about your locally sourced ingredients?
I’m a huge advocate of organic and correctly sourced food. I will be in partnership with several farms within the state as well as beyond.
When you head out of town for these events, how do you describe our city?
I’m Brooklyn born, but I have been in Phoenix for a long time — almost 20 years. [I share that] Phoenix is a melting pot and the land of opportunity, which leads to growth. It’s a beautiful place.
You’ve hosted “A Taste of Chic” pop-up dining experiences from the east to west coast, will those still be part of your repertoire?
Yes, the brand is about breaking down barriers and building bonds through food. Having my own space will allow for bigger and better events that will allow concentration solely on Phoenix.
When you have guests visit you, what’s one place you must take them to experience while they’re here?
My favorite restaurant is The Salt Cellar in Tempe. I’m a pescatarian and they have a fantastic selection of everything ocean. Also, Different Pointe of View at Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs Resort is another hot spot for scenic views.
What’s one Arizona or Phoenix experience that’s on your bucket list?
Would you believe I haven’t visited the Grand Canyon? It's on my bucket list for sure.
What’s your favorite thing about our city?
I love that Phoenix is a melting pot and that Phoenix is open to culture.
Aside from your new shop, what does your plan for the year ahead entail?
The sky is the limit! I have a whiskey brand that will be releasing soon. Some television introductions happening soon … just know it’s new, innovative and needed.
Is there anything else you would like local foodies as well as future visitors to know?
Chic Chef Co. is growing and we look forward to showcasing what the brand is about. I like to show, instead of talk, that way my entire vision can be displayed tangibly.
We can't wait to see for ourselves.
In the meantime, select items from Fields' 60-product line can be found and Whole Foods locations nationwide.